Eight killed in Missouri plane crash

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The Independent US

A commuter plane crashed in woods as it approached an airport in Missouri, killing at least eight of the 15 people on board, officials said.

A commuter plane crashed in woods as it approached an airport in Missouri, killing at least eight of the 15 people on board, officials said.

At least two people on board the flight from St Louis survived yesterday's crash and were being treated at a hospital, and five were missing, said Adair County Chief Deputy Larry Logston. Of the 15 onboard, 13 were passengers and two were crew members.

The last communication from the Jetstream 32 twin-engine turboprop indicated it was on a normal approach to Kirksville Regional Airport, and there was no mention of any problems, said Elizabeth Isham Cory, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration in Chicago.

Weather conditions at the time of the crash were overcast with misting and some thunderstorms in the area, according to an FAA weather observation system. It was not immediately known if weather was a factor.

The plane crashed four miles south of the Kirksville airport, she said. The plane, Corporate Airlines Flight 5966, was on a regular route from St. Louis when it crashed shortly after 7.50pm, she said.

Logston said there were two known survivors — a man and a woman.

The two survivors were being treated at Northeast Regional Medical Center in Kirksville, according to Larry Rodgers, a spokesman for the hospital. He said both were stable, but had no information about the extent of their injuries.

"As the physicians evaluate them, we should know more," he said.

Corporate Airlines, based in Smyrna, Tennessee, began operating in 1996 and is affiliated with American Airlines. As AmericanConnection, Corporate provides 70 flights from 13 cities in the Midwest to St. Louis and Nashville.

Doug Caldwell, Corporate Airlines' CEO, said the crash was the airline's first fatal accident. The company has 250 employees and flies 17 Jetstream 32s. The airline was trying to contact the families of all the passengers Tuesday night, he said.

"On behalf of Corporate Airlines, I want to extend our deepest sympathies to the family of the passengers of flight 5966," Caldwell said in a news release. The statement also said the airline could not speculate as to the cause of the crash.

There was no immediate comment from American Airlines.

Kirksville is about 220 miles northwest of St Louis.

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